Concrete and asphalt are the two most popular types of material for paving driveways. Asphalt driveways and concrete driveways both have distinct advantages. If you live in the Twin Cities and are considering a driveway, it is imperative to determine the ideal sub-base for your particular location, and assess your current sub-base. Without a proper sub-base, you increase the risk of the driveway cracking due to winter freeze and thaw cycles. If you are replacing an asphalt driveway with concrete, your current sub-base may be adequate due to the high natural strength of concrete. Asphalt driveways are typically less expensive to install than concrete driveways but may involve more maintenance. If maintained correctly, an asphalt driveway can last up to 30 years. When properly sealed and maintained, concrete driveways can last 50 years or longer.
Why do some property owners choose concrete over asphalt for their driveways? There are several reasons:
- Appearance: A driveway is the first thing people see when they visit your home. Many people like the look and feel of a concrete driveway, especially with decorative enhancements like coloring or exposed aggregate concrete.
- Long Term Cost: Although the initial cost of concrete is more than asphalt, concrete can last up to twice as longer asphalt.
- Neighborhood Compatibility – In many Twin Cites neighborhoods, concrete driveways are especially popular. In some developments, they may even be required. Maintaining the look of your neighborhood may be a factor in your decision and increase the value of your home.
- Comfort: A concrete driveway is more comfortable and cleaner to walk on with bare feet. Concrete doesn’t heat up in the sun or soften like asphalt.